Apparel retailer Foschini has posted a 42.6 per cent year-on-year earnings leap for fiscal 2003.

The South African company, which owns the Markhams, @home, Exact!, Sterns and American Swiss brands, attributed the rise to a successful reinvention of store formats and improved consumer confidence.

In addition to higher earnings, Foschini also registered 13.6 per cent year-on-year turnover growth to R4.41 billion for the 12-month period, while the company's trading margin climbed from 14.5 per cent last year to 18.1 per cent.

The best performer in the group was @home, which lifted its turnover by 48.1 per cent year-on-year to $176.5 million for the period.